Australia's white wine scene is a hotbed of quality, and very much on the up. The country's foremost wine communicator, Huon Hooke surveys new and established wineries, large and small, to name his top estates. As published in the Decanter July 2012 issue.
Hunter Valley, New South Wales
Since this venerable family winery, under fourthgeneration proprietor Bruce Tyrrell, sold off the Long Flat brand and non-premium assets, and re-focused the portfolio on high-quality Hunter regional wines, Tyrrell’s has soared to a new high. With longstanding chief winemaker Andrew Spinaze calling the shots and running a strong team, quality is outstanding across the board, especially with white wines. The array of Semillons is breathtaking, with Vat 1 (and Museum Releases thereof) at the crown, and single-vineyard bottlings of HVD, Belford, Stevens, plus the marginally eccentric Johnno’s Basket Pressed Semillon on its tail. Chardonnay is also better than ever, with Vat 47 and Belford maintaining their position among the Hunter’s elite – finer, less oaky and less alcoholic than the wines of the past.
Tyrrell’s, Single-Vineyard HVD Semillon 2006
Fresh, crisp, youthfully fragrant aromas of freshly squeezed lemon juice. This has stacks of pure, zesty fruit on the palate. Really delicate and yet intense, it fills the mouth, dancing on the tongue and blossoming on the back palate. A truly delicious wine. 19.5pts/20
Price: £21.99 Fells